My dad used to say, “It doesn’t matter the gift; it doesn’t matter the prize. Just make sure that you always say hello.” He taught us that relationships are everything, and I try to live my life that way. To me, it’s not about the task or the gift, but the connection I make with people.
That’s why when my parents divorced when I was 12 years old, my eyes were opened to see life in a different way. I became especially interested in relationships and eventually became a licensed marriage and family therapist. Not only do I have a career in helping others with their relationships, but I also simply enjoy hearing stories about relationships — and even just watching chick flicks.
I am a Utah County transplant. Although I grew up in Salt Lake City, I love living in Eagle Mountain, working full time at BYU, and spending two nights a week doing personal counseling in Lindon.
I met my wife in a research methods class at BYU, and the professor still touts that good things can come out of research methods. My wife and I love taking our four children around Utah County to things like Lehi Foam Day or Thanksgiving Point.
I also love music — anything from musical theater to Josh Groban to Eminem. And I confess, I even love a little One Direction. When I was in high school I lettered in music and sang in two choirs. We would sing all over the valley in rest homes and hospitals, banquets, and singing valentines.
Over the years I’ve learned a lot about bravery from my clients. People are amazingly resilient. It takes a lot of courage to tell a stranger all your problems. Sometimes I don’t get to see the end result of my work because when people are doing better they stop coming. But I love their bravery, and it’s very satisfying to see someone overcome fear or pain.
There may be an assumption that when you’re a therapist all your relationships are at a wonderful level. We have our challenges like any other couple, but at the end of the day I am trying to make a difference one relationship at a time. l